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Friday, July 17, 2015

Watching Gawker implode -- grab the popcorn 

I have often enjoyed reading Gawker, particularly for goofy posts like this:


Not to mention how they single-handedly made Rob Ford's cocaine use into a major story in the United States, where it would otherwise have been ignored.
But what I don't like about Gawker is its juvenile and parochial tendency to start little wars with other New York media organizations -- Reddit, for example, and the New York Post, and now Conde Nast.
I haven't done any research on this because I don't want to affect my amateur status, but I would think these bizarre wars are a combination of 1) the Gawker organization hiring executives and/or reporters with grudges against former employers, and 2) inadequate editorial judgement which allows too many stupid stories to be posted by people with agendas instead of news judgement.
And now it has all come tumbling down. Last night I was shocked to read Gawker's mean-spirited and gratuitous "outing" of a Conde Nast chief financial officer -- I wasn't the only one, and Twitter death rays roasted Gawker all last night, resulting in Gawker removing the story earlier today, issuing a non-apology apology which was apparently misleading about how the removal decision was made, and now its own editorial staff is flipping out about the removal.
This isn't going to end well.

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Friday, July 10, 2015

Things I didn't know 

Did you know there is an "anti-vaccine" movement now for dogs? Today I Learned About The Anti-Vaccinating Dog Movement. How incredibly stupid can some people be?
And I didn't know that judges could be this stupid -- there are three children in Michigan who were "sentenced" in June to an indefinite stay in a juvenile detention facility because this idiotic woman decided they should have a relationship with their father. Yes, I know.
And I've been busy watching Wimbledon and Vasek Pospisil's incredible run there, in singles and doubles. I must admit, after the way Pospisil was treated in the quarterfinal -- Murray's disdain, the referee's interference -- I was more than a little glad that Murray did not make the Wimbledon final this year.


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Friday, June 26, 2015

SCOTUS drags the US into the 21st Century 

Now the United States will experience "gay marriage", just like dozens of other countries already have.

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With this, plus yesterday's Obamacare decision, the United States has been pulled kicking and screaming into the modern world.
I can only hope that people in the United States will have the same epiphany that Paul Martin did -- he said that following the Canadian supreme court decision in 2005, he realized marriage equality was not a religious issue but a civil rights issue.

Recommend this Post at Progressive Bloggers | 5 comments

Saturday, June 20, 2015

This is not an Onion story: "white supremacists worried that Charleston shooting makes them look bad" 

When I first read a tweet about this article, I thought it had to be an Onion joke:

White supremacists on Thursday quickly tried to distance themselves from the suspect in the mass shooting at a historically black church in Charleston, worried that a white man killing nine people in a black church in South Carolina looked bad for their movement.
But its not -- this is actual reporting!

Stormfront commenters continued to hold out hope Thursday morning that perhaps Roof wasn't motivated by racism -- maybe it was anti-Christian hatred instead -- and their movement could keep what they think of as their good name.
"Lets not jump to conclusions and call him a WN [white nationalist] until there is an indication as such... The fact that he targeted a church gives me an inkling that it was religion-related," wrote WhiteVirginian.
"Yep, bad news for gun rights advocates as well," wrote maththeorylover2008. "Another nail in the coffin for the 2nd Amendment."
Time and again, many Stormfront members emphasized that their online community is one inclined to peace and racial harmony -- albeit segregated.
Ridiculous, isn't it.

This kind of pushback began almost at once, though -- when I was watching CNN on the night it happened, the anchors were already questioning the police chief's description of the shooting as a "hate crime" and then of course Fox started right in with the "anti-christian" spin.

So I wonder if anyone is going to start talking about how racism is just "biological wiring."

Recommend this Post at Progressive Bloggers | 4 comments

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Jerks will be jerks, unless the military won't tolerate it 

So the Canadian military explains rape with a "boys will be boys" statement:



Actually, assholes will be assholes and jerks will be jerks, unless the Canadian military takes responsibility for who they are admitting and what they are training men to do.  Zero tolerance would be a place to start.

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Sunday, June 07, 2015

Thanks, Tabatha 

Brilliant column by Tabatha Southey on Caitlyn Jenner and how bizarre and inappropriate the pundit reactions have been to her. Tabatha points out this essential truth:
...[transgendered] people are not a dilemma that needs to be solved, by you or anyone else.

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Experimental science 

xkcd: Placebo Blocker:

Placebo Blocker



I recall talking to a psychologist once about how people reacted to getting a diagnosis of a life-threatening disease.  So we thought perhaps we could do an experiment where we gave half the group a case of the flu, and the other half a life-threatening disease, and then we could evaluate which group behaved with more nobility and grace.  But this was in the days before ethics boards...

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